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Yesterday's introduction to archeoastronomy has hopefully opened minds to the essentials of what prehistoric people thought about the cosmos and their temporal placement in its greater context. (Although it was reposted by several influential Daily Koss speciality groups, I guess they are called, this diary (for those who missed reading it) is now available only in my profile's archives, but can also be directly assessed at this URL: http://www.dailykos.com/....)

Today we will return to the past (as time travel visitors), specifically more eavesdropping on what's happening during Chaco Canyon's solstice and equinox events. This time we will shiver with them during the onset of winter and the shortest day of the year: December 21. There is still much to learn about their ancient practices and how such seemingly primitive minds were elevated to a great degree simply by applying basic mathematics and scientific principles. Saying this is more or less akin to what most of us today know how to use a computer or smart phone, yet understanding very little all the steps that were involved in the process of creating such innovations. Thus do we see a steady advancement through the centuries of a people walking through time benchmarked by conclusive eras nothing cultural and personal innovations. For instance, the Pecos Classification system that begins with the Archaic, transitions through the Basketmaker, and thence to the many tiers depicting the five Puebloan eras. (if interested in this particular subject matter, please read my Archeological Timeline diary: http://www.dailykos.com/...).

Chaco's stone haven redoubt fastened by time and a fixated mindset geared to seasonal ceremony in harmony with the great eye of the cosmos overhead suffuses the nature and purpose of this remote archeoastronomy site laid out in today's San Juan Basin of northwest New Mexico. The seasonal star gazers and gatherers who designed Chaco's layout stood their patient and astute watches around two of the most important seasons: the summer and winter solstice. In between, the pivotal vernal and autumnal equinoxes evenly quartered the year, each change of season bringing a change to the people, as well as to the land their stewardship had cultivated over many centuries. They found a way to harmonize with the clockworks of sidereal time and temporality. Ceremony and tradition is what made the Ancestral Puebloans whole and functional as a sustainable community.

(Continues after the fold.)

The question remains: Was Chaco's appeal as a likely mecca based on religious ceremony intended solely for a religious purpose (or by whatever similar and sedulous designate one prefers)? For instance, could Chaco's compound also have been fabricated to also function as an outpost for imports (mainly pottery and jewelry acquired by trade) or food storage coming from far south of the Colorado Plateau and extending well to the north? There is indeed a strong Mayan influence behind Chaco Canyon's design; there was indeed a collection of assorted pottery found here that came from all sectors of the Southwest, including Mesoamerica.

Meanwhile, we know between 900 and 1150 or thereabouts that Chaco was a pivotal axis of culture for the Ancestral Puebloans; we know the Chacoans quarried sandstone blocks and hauled timber (mainly, ponderosa pine) from great distances, all the materials assembled into fifteen major complexes which remained the largest dwellings in North America until the 19th Century; we know it was a seasonal place where various communities gathered; and we know the puzzle of its remote setting has everything to do with Chaco's solar and lunar alignment given most of its perfectly aligned dwellings. Beyond such insight we also realize the greater obscurity manifested in Chaco's unique archive of stone structures that may trace its development into, say, the Hopi tribal people, who for the most part remain taciturn and private about the Hisatsinom (their preferred designate for the Ancestral Puebloans) and Chaco Canyon's enduring mystery. In short, there is only so much we outsiders can know about a long-standing chronicle of an ancient people that today is only partially gleaned, especially by cultural scientists.

A picture of Old Oraibi, the oldest continually inhabited village in North America:

Historic 1920s photograph:

With these above remarks in mind, let us delve into the implications of Chaco's predictive science by way of solstice and equinox events. We at least know these people could accurately say when the four major quarters of the year changed. Those predictions have everything to do with Fajada Butte and select slabs of rocks and engraved diagrams in the butte, as well as a matchup with Pueblo Bonito's solar-alignment dwelling laid out far below and away from this lofty landmark serving as a direct beacon point for the cosmos.

So here we are. . .observers observing the observers (this time depicted in a diary mostly backed up by images). Take a look around and get into the mood by the wintry scene. . .

Imagine this structure has a roof and is completely intact:

Imagine the interior is without snow. . .

The people are gathered in many kivas in the compound, waiting. . .

You. . .are. . .here:

The Observation Phase (Depicted In Pictures):

The night sky holds wonder for these people. . .

orion's photo

The heavens are not so much distant and unreachable as they are guiding lights for a temporal way of life. . .

There is a connection from the temporal to the eternal these people realize at some arcane level. . .

And this star light in particular. . .

And they patiently wait for that light to reach their temporal shores. . .

Eventually, a directed beacon of light will reach an intentional temporal point, like this:

Or perhaps a glyph target like this:

A preciseness of mathematics by way of astute observation and planning that may have taken generations for these people to have mastered:

Thus a reliable and primal calendar without fail! And this ubiquitous archeoastronomy glyph found here and elsewhere in the world. . .

. . .is a correlation for this commonly seen image in the night's sky, however distant, however vague its impression to the senses. . .

Now you know some of the meaning behind the glyphs, though some knowledge remains hidden.

As William Blake wrote: To see a world in a grain of sand and heaven in a wild flower hold infinity in the palm of your hand and eternity in an hour. Only substitute a wild flower for a sun or a galaxy of suns. . .

We outsiders to these celestial and temporal affairs may not know all that there is to know, but these Puebloan dancers of today retain such secrets as revealed in their traditions and ceremonies. They are, after all, the direct descendants of the Ancestral Puebloans and therefore entrusted with a long-standing legacy of entitlement.

May I also suggest a venerable adage from the East that says: Do not presume to walk in my mind with your dirty feet! In other words, what concepts we may have about these people and their connection to the distant past remains a private matter pertaining to their legacy.

Let us retrace our steps outside. . .

interior w/snow colored photo

. . .returning to the snow laden kivas and other dwellings. . .

. . .while holding the image of the dancers in mind. . .

. . .and taking note of the blue sky and everything around us.

Meaning, we realize there are three more important celestial events yet to come and will be celebrated in such places throughout the year. . .

. . .and by such people. . .

. . .who lived in such places. . .

. . .all of whom had no written language, yet left us their signature art. . .

. . .depicting anthropomorphic or alien-like figures. . .

. . .and sometimes a likeness of an indelible imprint on their consciousness.

Thus a likely meaning of circular time, impermanence in all things, in all ways, and the matrix of the entire cosmos of which we are all part.

So, what do you say we get back to the future by whatever means you traveled here today. . .

And don't forget these dudes, Scotty. . .beam 'em up:

Hope you folks enjoyed a different way of grasping archeoastronomy's process. Look forward to seeing you in tomorrow's final installment.

As always, your thoughtful commentaries are welcomed.

Rich
http://www.nmstarg.com/...
http://www.grandcanyon.org/...

Originally posted to richholtzin on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 01:41 PM PST.

Also republished by SciTech and Community Spotlight.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Another great diary hotlisted (19+ / 0-)

    for when I have more time to devote to it.

    Thanks Rich.

    I am a work in progress. Still.

    by broths on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 02:35:13 PM PST

  •  I've been to sites around that region. (16+ / 0-)

    But, I have not been to Chaco Canyon. It will be a destination one day.

    Thank you for the interesting diary.


    Predicting is hard...especially the future. ~ Y. Berra

    by jim in IA on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 03:19:50 PM PST

    •  RH adds a lot to what I thought I saw -- n/t (12+ / 0-)

      "As long as Unicorns roam the earth, evil can never harm the pure of heart."

      by PHScott on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 03:23:29 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  too kind. . . (4+ / 0-)

        your blushing comments and how you said it. But thanks. That is always a very good feeling to know when writers can connect with their readers. . .and more importantly readers who equally connect with the writer. That's not a koan, by the way. So thanks for your support and commentary as always, PHScott. Truly.

        Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

        by richholtzin on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 07:18:04 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Well there, jim in IA. . . (6+ / 0-)

      when you do drop by visit, and something tells that you will, you have good information to hold your own against most of the tourist crowd that knows so very little about the realness of this special and sacred setting. Who knows. . .maybe you can lead a group to Fijada Butte and tell your charges this is where it all started. Thanks for posting your comment. Chaco is indeed a special place well worth the time to visit and meditate.

      Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

      by richholtzin on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 06:33:27 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  not sure if this posted or not. . . (0+ / 0-)

      but my eyes get blurry since I am up and at 'em around 4 before the sun and writing, editing, researching just about most of the say. Ergo, I sometimes press the wrong key or hit the wrong something or other, Jim in IA. Anyway, here's what I thought I had sent to you, as a reply. . .call me daft and maybe there is something good about losing one's mind in such a way. HA!

      Original comment: And when you do drop by visit, and something tells that you will, you have good information to hold your own against most of the tourist crowd that knows so very little about the realness of this special and sacred setting. Who knows. . .maybe you can lead a group to Fijada Butte and tell your charges this is where it all started. Thanks for posting your comment. Chaco is indeed a special place well worth the time to visit and meditate.

      Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

      by richholtzin on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 07:20:52 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  wow Rich, this is comprehensive and so much work (7+ / 0-)

    and from so many sources...in that I have seen bits of this here and there, but never put together so thoroughly and ...accessible.

    Thank you very much, still trying to get it all..may take awhile:>

    This machine kills Fascists.

    by KenBee on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 04:26:20 PM PST

    •  That's the way I roll. . . (7+ / 0-)

      writing these diaries and keeping in mind so many tangents, so many sources, which I think makes the subject matter more engaging. Hope so. It has taken me many years to even think about writing such works and yet the real experts are out there waiting for you procure their books. I'm too broke to add any more to my library. HA! Anyway, as always, I very much appreciate your support and comments, KenBee. Truly.

      Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

      by richholtzin on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 06:31:22 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Wow, another hit for my digital bookshelf (5+ / 0-)

    Hotlisted to be read on the weekend. Looks more than interesting. We can't wait to make a trip to the region where our time there is going to be greatly enriched by your diaries.  

    •  I didn't wait til the weekend.....fantastic diary! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cotterperson, RiveroftheWest

      Rich, this is one of your best diaries in terms of how you walked us through the story, concepts, and cultural science. The history and especially the glyphs and art that you have described and analyzed over the past few months have really changed the way that I look at the region. Can't wait to get back there and use my new lenses and appreciate even more what the Colorado Plateau offers we current residents of the world!!!  

      •  new lenses, indeed. . . (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cotterperson, RiveroftheWest

        and I take it the new lens of perspective, Don Enrique? In any event, your support and commentary is always appreciated and I thank you very much for doing so. Today's diary concludes this fascinating topic, with a closer look at how equinoxes work and the eclipses that certainly had an impression on prehistoric people. On the weekend, a surprise two-part diary featuring one of America's best known, though misunderstood national parks (given its name and features). Can you guess where this setting is???

        Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

        by richholtzin on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 07:27:46 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  I visited Chaco Canyon last fall... (8+ / 0-)

    ...and I intend to go back again this coming fall.  I would very much like to know more about the people who built this place.  

    I really liked how you told the story with pictures, and the pictures themselves are feast for the eyes. Looking forward to Part 3!

    I always prefer to believe the best of everybody, it saves so much trouble.

    by Joy of Fishes on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 05:16:04 PM PST

    •  Your comments. . . (6+ / 0-)

      Joy of Fishes are most welcomed. I never quite know how I'm going to present anything until it, well, just happens. I find the writing freer and more creative this way. Sorry I can't afford an editor to clean it up. Still, the message gets through and that is  part of what matters, the other part is making sure the Dkos community finds satisfaction in the information. Part 3 is on track for posting tomorrow, maybe around 3 MST. Thanks, as always, for your support and comments.

      Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

      by richholtzin on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 06:29:38 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  An absolutely (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, SuWho, RiveroftheWest, sfbob

    stunning Diary.  This could be the beginning of a book.
    Thanks so much for writing this.  

    Now I'll go back up & finish reading, just had to post.
    ====
    As far as solar calendars, that's not something that's a big item in the US.  Or the rest of the world for that matter.  It seems to belong to the 'fringe' sciences, like Stonehenge or the Mayan calendar.  These topics don't get the recognition they deserve.

    In my opinion, it's the most fascinating and interesting; I just can't get enough of it.  

    •  I agree. . . (5+ / 0-)

      with your assessment about solar calendars. I think these native people (at least the culture this diary specifically sets its focus on) were light years ahead of us in so many ways; a cleaner spirituality as it were. I am happy you find this diary series to your liking, Cliss. Thank you for posting your thoughtful comments.

      Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

      by richholtzin on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 06:26:58 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  The recurring glyph appears to indicate 2 things (6+ / 0-)

    to me. A basic understanding of the solar systems and galaxies (possibly inferred by math without gravity) and the direction of time.

    Very fascinating!

    Diaries like these are why I read Daily Kos continuously and not just for the political information.

    Kudos back at ya (to Paraphrase Rush Limbaugh) lol

    Listen to Netroots Radio or to our pods on Stitcher. "We are but temporary visitors on this planet. The microbes own this place" <- Me

    by yuriwho on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 06:37:57 PM PST

    •  kudos to you, as well. . . (5+ / 0-)

      and thanks for posting, yuriwho. I like you idea of a basic understanding of clockworks (my words) of the universe and how people innately understood something significant, as a corollary bridging the eternal with the temporal. An inference of math without gravity, indeed. Quite nice how you put that. And I am glad you enjoy the other side of the DKos community, the non political stuff. Those pundits are way over my head and ability and they sure don't need the likes of me messing about with such writings. I stick to what I know and I am forever having to learn and relearn what I think I know. Could be older age, do you think? Diary 3 posts tomorrow about 3 pm. MST) and I hope you'll join me for the conclusion. Sure is a fascinating subject, isn't it?

      Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

      by richholtzin on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 07:15:53 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Another treasure, Rich, (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SuWho, linkage, ybruti, RiveroftheWest

    thank you so much for taking the time. I've been wondering about that spiral symbol, which I first saw decades ago in a documentary about the "Sun Dagger" on Fajada Butte. When I visited Chaco Canyon back in the '80s, we were advised not to climb it because of the rattlesnakes. (We wouldn't have made it anyway!)

    Now that I'm back in the Ozark Mountains, I've seen that spiral again twice: once etched in some stones in a stream in southern Missouri and once on a "mano" I bought at a re-sale shop. A ceremonial mano, an Osage acquaintance noted, and was I going to repatriate it! (Yes, I will.)

    For a long time, I've believed "change is the only constant." Do you suppose the same was noted by these diverse people?

    circular time, impermanence in all things, in all ways, and the matrix of the entire cosmos of which we are all part
    Thanks again for a fine virtual tour.

    "Let each unique song be sung and the spell of differentiation be broken" - Winter Rabbit

    by cotterperson on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 07:23:04 PM PST

    •  that famous glyph on the butte. . . (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cotterperson, RiveroftheWest

      the one you almost got to, except for the r-snakes (and the heft climb, of course). . .it may be the most iconic of all glyphs, and certainly something global. I first struck upon Chaco in the early 1970s, when the glyph was still intact, before the seismic shake that disturbed the site, and I never minded climbing any butte, mesa or mountain. Of course, the site is not off limits to everyone and is preserved only in photos. Anyway, I wonder if could share a photo of what you purchased, the before and after, that is, after the repatriation project is over, if not already behind you, cotterperson????  Gracias. Fine country you folks have back there. . .limestone and deep water lakes, I think. Lots of gorgeous fossils and such. I love limestone!

      Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

      by richholtzin on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 05:26:21 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Here's the mano. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sfbob, RiveroftheWest

        Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug

        The snapshot doesn't quite do justice to the color, which is has a golden tone.

        We do have fine rocks here and plenty of water, including a couple of Corps lakes, in the White River watershed. The lakes are unusually low, and apparently there are a lot of surface hunters picking up artifacts. Just this week, the Corps issued a warning about the hefty fine for removing them from federal lands.

        People lived on the 40 acres that's been in our family for 100+ years, and I've learned most of what we find there is prehistoric (Dalton, at least). I'm hoping to convince some archaeologist to do an excavation before I go about repatriation. Don't yet know where the prehistoric ones will go.

        "Let each unique song be sung and the spell of differentiation be broken" - Winter Rabbit

        by cotterperson on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 07:47:39 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  this is spectacular. . . (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          cotterperson, RiveroftheWest

          I take it this is a proven lithic from the archives, cotterperson, and may I send this photo to an archeologist friend who may be able to glean more info from this very fascinating glyph art you procured, I think you said this, fairly recently? Contact me via my profile's email and we can discuss the matter further. Right now I am sensing there is a diary of information in this piece, alone, which you are encouraged to write! Thanks for sending this along to me. Most kind.

          Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

          by richholtzin on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 08:33:46 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'd be pleased for you to share it, (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            RiveroftheWest

            but it is not proven or from any archives. I bought it from a re-sale shop about 10 years ago. The shop had bought a box at auction in northwest Arkansas, and that's where it was found.

            It was identified spontaneously by a former Osage tribal judge who saw it in my home one Christmas Eve. Unfortunately, I don't have the "fund of information" to diary about it.

            I do plan to take some other things I've found to an archaeologist who will be available to ID artifacts in March, Archaeology Month in Arkansas. I'd be delighted to know what your friend says, and you've inspired me to take the mano to visit the archaeologist.

            Thanks!

            "Let each unique song be sung and the spell of differentiation be broken" - Winter Rabbit

            by cotterperson on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 09:16:32 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  who knows about these things. . . (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              RiveroftheWest

              the age and value and so on given this artifact you now possessed. I think of the mind behind the hands that made this work of art, fascinated by the message. . .something to ponder, not quite like a koan, but a kind of time capsule. I will send this to a friend and see what she thinks. You keep me posted about those other artifacts, including anything you may discover about this piece. Best go about it by connecting with me via my profile email, as once these diary commentaries are replaced by new works, and I have them coming all the time, I'm liable to miss the import of such news, meaning yours. You are lucky to have connected with this Osage tribal judge on the matter.

              Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

              by richholtzin on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 02:46:48 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  Just got around to seeing your Part I and now your (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SuWho, linkage, cotterperson

    Part II. Very entertaining.

    Just last night on Ancient Aliens (I'll dip into different stuff on cable occasionally, though I'm hardly a big fan of this stuff) they presented something about the petroglyphs that resembled the "Grays," supposedly extraterrestrials that have been reported in contemporary "alien encounters."

     

    "They come, they come To build a wall between us We know they won't win."--Crowded House, "Don't Dream It's Over."

    by Wildthumb on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 07:32:12 PM PST

    •  truth is sometimes stranger. . . (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cotterperson, RiveroftheWest

      than supposed fiction, Wildthumb. I am not aware of this term "Grays" that you speak of, but wonder if you can contact me through my profile's email and enlighten me. I mean, you see a tangible connection of some sort given what you have read in the diaries I just posted (plus today's conclusion). So why not kick some new ideas around and let's see where it goes? I try and maintain my mind like a parachute. You know. Thanks for posting your comments.

      Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

      by richholtzin on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 05:21:38 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Rich- There is a long-running program on the (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RiveroftheWest

        History Channel called "Ancient Aliens." I dip into it once in a while but I'm not a big follower of alien encounters and extraterrestrial history on earth. I'm a skeptic. But it is interesting because they try to draw parallels between what the Paleoindians illustrated in their rock art and the descriptions of the "Grays," seemingly beings with gray skin and large, insect-like eyes. (Surely you've seen their representations.) Years ago, Erich von Daniken wrote his book Chariots of the Gods? which largely kicked off all this interest.

        What the "investigators" or enthusiasts on this program try to suggest is that extraterrestrials have been visiting earth for many thousands of years and have influenced the direction of human development. Check out the History Channel's blog.

        I think all this stuff is entertaining, but I don't take it too far myself. I think the Skeptic society has tried to debunk all this stuff. But hey, I have an open mind, too. Why these "gods" or odd beings illustrated by ancient Indians resemble descriptions of modern-day "reports" of extraterrestrial encounters could be just a coincidence.

        But: these coincidences could have a psychological dimension too in the Jungian sense of depicting examples of a kind of symbolism in our "collective unconscious." These images may come right out of our deepest, buried human imagery and memory. But of course this is an entirely different direction and dimension. (But I think is more fruitful.) Thanks for asking.

        "They come, they come To build a wall between us We know they won't win."--Crowded House, "Don't Dream It's Over."

        by Wildthumb on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 10:00:41 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Next career!?!? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SuWho, linkage

    I am a history teacher who has always had a fascination with this area. If I had to do it all over again, I would do this. Any suggestions?

    •  regarding your comment. . . (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RiveroftheWest

      please get in touch with me at my profile email. Have lots of ideas and let's kick a few of them around, mexchewy. "His" "Story" today is no longer the fabled stuff of yesterday; but thoughtful and fair and objective analysis of the whole enchilada, the good, bad and the ugly. If I had it to do all over again I think I would have been a bona fide history teacher (of the Southwest) and not just an armchair supporter and reader and researcher of same.

      Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

      by richholtzin on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 05:19:18 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Thank You - N/T (0+ / 0-)

    "Upward, not Northward" - Flatland, by EA Abbott

    by linkage on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 09:41:43 PM PST

  •  I had an epiphany at Chaco on the winter Solstice (4+ / 0-)

    Was there for the solstice - which was amazing. But I camped without a sleeping bag or any real winter clothes. Stunningly cold night turned to morning and by the second morning I knew exactly when and where the sun was going to shine at first light and set.

    one of your pics, a spiral, looks like it is from Estrella near South Mountain or maybe up on the beeline highway. I have long theorized (with no real proof or actual study) that some of the various the archaeoastronomic markings in the Phoenix area, Esp. near the Zoo and the archaeology park, but also along the beeline and other likely trail/transport routes, are in part navigational aids connected to Chaco and the other big communities in the southwest. I always wanted to walk from one to the next trying to follow the daily big obvious celestial markers, like sunrise in winter, sunset and certain basic celestial observations. sounds kooky I suppose. But simple cues to walk in a consistent direction and eventually hit one if those Chaco roads, which narrow on approach to the ville so you know your are going in the right dir.

    Ride for the High Country

    by The Ex Cowboy on Wed Feb 20, 2013 at 11:01:52 PM PST

    •  Your insight on the spiral glyphs... (4+ / 0-)

      is remarkable as it is keen, The Ex Cowboy. You have struck upon something of a truth, an innate truth transmitted through time from a people long ago who, in a way, are very much still with us. . .pointing the way. Do read Craig Childs "House of Rain" to learn more about the direction of travel he traced (regarding the Ancestral Puebloans migrating to/from the Colorado Plateau. He will open doors and windows in your mind to continue your search and inquiry about such matters. Thank you, again, for posting your comments. Is there any way you can take some photos of those glyphs down your way and send them to me??? I am not familiar with the locales you mentioned, though, of course, I am familiar with that sprawling sector of the Sonoran Desert.

      Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

      by richholtzin on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 05:16:25 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Another great post, Rich -- thank you! n/t (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson
  •  Now I wonder how many of the glyphs I saw (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, RiveroftheWest

    as a kid in very remote locations were put there not just because it was a flat rock in a tight cranny but to mark time.

    I am just glad most are not defaced with 'Kilroy was here' due to their remote location and Indian 'guards'. The only reason I got to see them was due to a respected forest Ranger who had permission to show them to me.

    Our money system is not what we have been led to believe. The creation of money has been "privatized," or taken over by private money lenders. Thomas Jefferson called them “bold and bankrupt adventurers just pretending to have money.” webofdebt

    by arealniceguy on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 03:15:49 AM PST

    •  glyphs and your remarks. . . (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cotterperson, RiveroftheWest

      thanks, arealiceguy. . .your comments. One thing I know about sacred artifacts, even seeming Indian rock art, as some folks call it, in this part of the country is the respect most people have for same. It is a respect for the past, for the Native America people of today, and the honor, I call it, to come across such iconic figures, especially in the backcountry, always tends to be the first sensation people feel or sense. I have seen this time and time again given the hundreds of backcountry treks I've led, taking students or clients hither and yon and upon seeing these stone windows of artistry, thought and messages is striking. I try not interpret the images, though there are very common drawings, such as the spiral glyphs, that are equated to the cosmos, and most specifically to spiral galaxies. Hope you'll join me today for the conclusion of this archeoastronomy series that has been very well received by the community and I thank all of you for your kind support and commentary, at least those who took time to share your thoughts.

      Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

      by richholtzin on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 05:11:09 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Archaeoastronomy (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sfbob, RiveroftheWest

    In the late 70s/early 80s, the MIT publication Technology Review ran some amazing articles on archaeoastronomy.  My favorite was one that broke down certain Greek myths and demonstrated how they made excellent mnemonics  for various recurrent/annual astronomical patterns or events.  Another centered on the "medicine wheels" of the American west.  Those articles were some of the things I've read in life that gave me the greatest pleasure, and your diaries of the past couple of days have carried some of that same flavor.  Thank you very much!

    Ever get the feeling you've been cheated?

    by ActivistGuy on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 09:08:23 AM PST

    •  mighty fine compliment . . . (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ActivistGuy, RiveroftheWest

      and I thank you for the support, ActivistGuy. I have read studies on the medicine wheel, and there is one in particular in the Big Horn Mountains I really enjoyed hiking to, thinking about, and, well, slipping into the eddies of time and going way, way back before science captivating minds and imaginations and took some of the charm away. I'm certainly a science guy, but somehow archeoastronomy is like a touchstone to me, a subject that transports me to places centuries ago. Hence, the reason why all three diaries refer to such in the narrative (including today's that I just published twenty or so minutes ago). I wonder if I can find those MIT publications online??? Most everything else in the way of the information highway is on the web, so let me try and find something that you mentioned. I think you hit on something I would definitely like to know as well. Thanks for posting your comments.

      Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

      by richholtzin on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 02:38:32 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Astronomy of the Ancients (0+ / 0-)

        I did a bit of searching around myself and did not find the articles themselves online.  However, it appears MIT Press collected the articles (of which I guess there was a total of 8) into a single book-length publication:

        Astronomy of the Ancients
        , edited by K. Brecher and M. Feirtag, 1979, 206 pp. in Hardcover.

        According to the MIT Press the book remains in print and can be purchased at their site.

        Ever get the feeling you've been cheated?

        by ActivistGuy on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 11:35:05 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  And I thank you . . . (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ActivistGuy

          I think this is something I am going to enjoy reading and will order it very soon. It appears to be extant, and now I hope I can find it as a used selection and keep to my frugal budget. But sometimes it's just worth spending money for the things we need, not just want. Thanks, again, ActivistGuy, for steering me in this direction, this tome.

          Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

          by richholtzin on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 07:28:50 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Thank you, Rich, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RiveroftheWest

    I was off Kos yesterday and much of the day before. Lots of work here to keep on top of and sometimes it's hard to connect. Stories like yours do have a way of pulling me away from that, but also getting me outside of self, which is a good thing. I have no evidence to support this but do suspect based on reading and imagination that the "ancients" simply lived lives in which the ethereal or spiritual co-mingled with the corporeal. I believe separation of these simply wouldn't make much sense. Of course, we have reasons to do this separation in our civil society based on history and ongoing narrowness among many co-inhabitants of the planet. And of course there are plenty who outright deny the existense of anything outside of what they can sense. But I do believe something inside of us gets deactivated due to modernization and technology, as you hint several times here, even though lots of things get done in all eras on "faith," even during our era by self-proclaimed non-believers in anything spiritual. I think it's best sometimes to just let go and have faith and truly enjoy the ride once in awhile.

    Imagination is still a fundamental part of life and is essential in the creation of joy, I think, and you share a lot of joy by asking others to join you in these quests. Wonderful pics, again, too. Very much worth risking a chewing out to read here at work.

    I discover myself on the verge of a usual mistake. ― Walt Whitman, Song of Myself

    by dannyboy1 on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 10:30:31 AM PST

    •  what shapes most minds and. . . (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RiveroftheWest, dannyboy1

      imaginations is the empirical, dannyboy1, as you said, and so people prefer seeing things in a linear fashion, not circular, not peripheral, and I understand all that. But what you have commented in this reply makes sense to not the farfetched given such a mindset, but dreams, and people who look at the bubble of reality as merely one bubble inside many others, as well as contained within others we know nothing about. I haven't come out and made the statement in the three diaries posted on this subject (the third posted just a bit go), but the precise mathematics and insight to do what these ancient stargazers did requires an intuitive leap of faith. . .still grounded in the temporal, yet realizable in the eternal, at least for those who stand literally on ceremony. Thank you so much for very engaging thoughts on imagination. I like dreamers and people with imaginations. Makes my reality a bit more out there and interesting.

      Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

      by richholtzin on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 02:43:25 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Just got to your comment (0+ / 0-)

        and wanted to say that I did some research and writing on literacy vs. oral tradition(s) during college. I remember some of those studies, and there was actual evidence there when U.S. researchers viewed transcribed American Indian oral narratives about events that were covered in newspapers during the period, the American Indian depictions were factually as accurate as the newspaper accounts but were also richer in descriptive detail than the written accounts. That might suggest that anyone currently retaining pieces of the oral tradition who still survives with ancestral links to the peoples and times to which you refer can provide details and interpretations that could carry genuine validity. In fact, when I did do some linguistic studies of creoles, we were  basically "unearthing" fragments (artifacts) of African languages in transcribed speech patterns and utterances of modern Jamaicans. Pretty fascinating in its own right. Be well. d

        I discover myself on the verge of a usual mistake. ― Walt Whitman, Song of Myself

        by dannyboy1 on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 07:22:12 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

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